Durham estate streets to be named after fallen police officers

Chief Constable Mike Barton
Chief Constable Mike Barton
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Durham police officers who lost their lives in the line of duty are to be remembered as part of a new housing development.

Persimmon Homes Durham Ltd's new Aykley Woods development is on the site of the old police headquarters just north of the city centre.

Now the firm has unveiled plans to name streets after six fallen Durham Constabulary officers in a move which coincides with national Police Memorial Day this Sunday.

Chief Constable Mike Barton said: "I am delighted Persimmon has honoured our fallen officers in this way, allowing their memory to live on in bricks and mortar.

"The Aykley Heads site will always have a special place in our hearts here in Durham, as it’s where our old headquarters stood proud for almost 50 years.

"It seems a very fitting tribute to those who lost their lives protecting the public of County Durham and Darlington that they are remembered at a place so important to

Durham Constabulary and our history."

The six officers to be honoured are:

*PC Matthew Walls Straughan, who was shot dead aged 36 on June 28, 1927, by a man on whom he had just served a summons;

*Sergeant Robert Little, 46, who died on 14 th December 14, 1930, after being overcome by fumes while rescuing an elderly lady trapped in a burning house. He was

posthumously awarded the King’s Medal for Gallantry;

*Twenty-eight-year-old PC William Ralph Shiell who was shot and fatally injured while chasing two burglars on March 1, 1940;

*Sergeant Stanley Woodward who died, aged 36, on October 13, 1958. He was killed by terrorists while seconded to the British Police Unit in Cyprus;

*Detective Constable James Brian Porter, who was shot dead whilst chasing two armed robbers on March 4, 1982. James, 31, was posthumously awarded the Queen’s commendation for Brave Conduct;

*PC Keith Maddison who died, aged 46, while chasing two suspects from a stole vehicle on May 21, 1997.

The first phase of the development will include Woodward Way and Maddison Court with the second phase set to include Shiell Heights and Straughan Crescent.

Street names for the next phase are yet to be agreed but will include reference to the final two officers James Brian Porter and Robert Little.

Neil Foster, managing director for Persimmon Homes Durham, said: "We are delighted to be involved with this fitting tribute as it’s important for us to support the

local community. It really is an honour to recognise these brave officers."

Coun Eddie Tomlinson, Durham County Council Cabinet member for assets, strategic housing and rural issues said: "We worked with Persimmon Homes towards delivering a high quality sustainable housing scheme on the former police headquarters site, which will make a positive contribution to the local economy and environment.

"We are pleased to see the development progressing and it is a nice touch that fallen policemen will be honoured in this way."